Apple U.K. Ads Backfiring?

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Apr 12, 2001
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PC Retail Magazine reports that data from YouGov's Brand Index shows that Apple's recently released U.K. Get A Mac Ads may be backfiring, with Apple's brand popularity reportedly falling 6 points on the company's scale.

A media backlash was levelled against the former Radio Four comedians alongside the YouGov figures. Some claim that the ad campaign propped up a 'smug superiority' stereotype that is sometimes associated with Apple enthusiasts.
Interestingly, we have not been able to find the original data either on YouGov's website or on Media Week's website, a magazine also said to have reported on the story.
 

xjebbx

macrumors newbie
Oct 30, 2005
11
0
dont doubt it.

in the UK they they don't do comparative advertisements like we do in the states. so i wouldn't be surprised.
 

drlunanerd

macrumors 68000
Feb 14, 2004
1,628
109
UK
Well, there has been a "media backlash" - in terms of a handful of journos criticising the supposed smugness of the Mac character due to his association with the unpleasant Peep Show character. I can see where they're coming from too - I don't think the casting has been very well thought through.
 

Grimace

macrumors 68040
Feb 17, 2003
3,542
43
with Hamburglar.
Frankly, I think that the ads are a bit over the top. Subtle humor is one thing, but I don't think it's so classy to trash Vista/M$ so much.
 

celaurie

macrumors 6502a
Mar 2, 2003
615
116
Scotland, UK.
I find the UK ads patronising. The US versions are funny and offer up something new. The guys doing the UK ads aren't too well known North of the border and everyone is like, "Whooo..?"

Get better marketing people in the UK, that's my advice to Steve.

~cel
 

arkitect

macrumors 603
Sep 5, 2005
5,951
5,733
Bath, United Kingdom
I don't know if it is the comparative adverts so much as a case of miscasting.

Earlier today I was passing through the Apple.com/uk site, as one does, and the "Office at Home" ad started up.

It, again, just struck me as being so joyless compared to the US ones which are far better (And usually I'd expect myself to be leaning the other way humour-wise).

I am not sure that Mitchell and Webb are right here. Maybe if Apple had chosen another pair.

in the UK they they don't do comparative advertisements like we do in the states. so i wouldn't be surprised.
 

Porco

macrumors 68040
Mar 28, 2005
3,125
5,999
I really think the time has come to come up with a different ad campaign regardless. I'm not sure whether the 'I'm a Mac/PC' ads ever worked overall - I have found some of them funny but I'm not sure I would have if I was exclusively a Windows PC user.

I think Leopard's release would mark an ideal point to start a new campaign based on actual comparisons... if they need to do comparisons at all. Just show the stuff that the Mac has that the PC doesn't. The hardware design, features that Leopard has and Vista doesn't and maybe a virus scan coming back with a big fat zero.
 

MadDoc

macrumors 6502
Apr 25, 2005
321
3
UK
I'm English and a Mac fan but I don't find the UK regional-specific Get A Mac ads very funny at all but I do like the American ones. I think the choice of actors is just wrong.

There's nothing wrong with taking a dig a Vista.
 

Eraserhead

macrumors G4
Nov 3, 2005
10,409
11,690
UK
Maybe the reason they work at all is that most people have never realised that Apple make computers at all, it would probably be better to advertise them like the iPod ad's just a bunch of people using Macs.
 

BoyBach

macrumors 68040
Feb 24, 2006
3,023
2
UK
Whoever 'did' the adverts should have cast David Mitchell as Mac, and not Robert Webb. In the print adverts Mitchell looks much friendlier, whereas Webb just looks far to smug.

Just my opinion.

:)
 

Apemanblues

macrumors regular
Jan 30, 2007
162
0
Zombieland
I thought the UK versions were just pointless. The US one's would have worked just as well over here.

I like Mitchell and Webb, but the ads don't really work with them. It's hard to turn down the money though.
 

ppnkg

macrumors 6502a
Jul 29, 2005
510
6
UK
Whatever.

Everytime I visit the university library I can't help noticing just how many macbooks are around. A couple of years ago macs were a rare sight. :apple:
 

vincebio

macrumors 6502a
Jun 27, 2005
788
46
Glasgow
:apple: do lots of stuff right.....this one however they got very wrong.

The UK mac guy is woefull.

I dont mind them when they do their own thing too much, but they are defo in the wrong adverts.

apple should have did the homework a bit better...the British Psyche is quite a bit different.
 

JPP

macrumors member
Jan 11, 2007
52
0
I think the ads are appalling. Mitchell and Webb are not a good idea at all. One good comedy show on Channel 4 not even written by them does not a classic comedic double act make. They're not exactly cutting edge or topical at the moment anyway - the short ugly one (is it Mitchell or Webb never can tell) is more famous for being on every gameshow going rather than for being actually talented at anything. And their sketch show on the BBC was rubbish.

From a branding perspective in the UK this is truly dire. Apple is capable of so much more. Look at the branding success they've had with the ipod and the shuffle - genius ads.

If I hadn't already switched (which I admit was due to the so called ipod halo effect) then this certainly wouldn't make me think of doing so...
 

jbh001

macrumors member
May 14, 2003
82
1
I don't know if it is the comparative adverts so much as a case of miscasting.

Earlier today I was passing through the Apple.com/uk site, as one does, and the "Office at Home" ad started up.

It, again, just struck me as being so joyless compared to the US ones which are far better (And usually I'd expect myself to be leaning the other way humour-wise).

I am not sure that Mitchell and Webb are right here. Maybe if Apple had chosen another pair.
I guess it's just different tastes. I thought "Office at Home" was very funny. I found their twist on "Pie Chart" refreshingly funny. And "Tentacle" was good because it was a good metaphor for Microsoft's "reduced functionality" kill switches they have incorporated into Vista and Office 2007.

Microsoft: "We have determined that your Bill Gates Friendship Dues (BGFD) are delinquent. You software has been switched to reduced functionality until you repurchase all your software. To avoid this in the future, please have your paycheck direct deposited to our account until further notice."
 

AdeFowler

macrumors 68020
Aug 27, 2004
2,282
277
England
Thankfully I'm not sure too many people outside the mac community will have seen them, so it's difficult to see how there could be a backlash. The US versions are definitely more likeable.
 

mdntcallr

macrumors 65816
Aug 1, 2000
1,467
135
this is retarded, they dont like apple cause of the commercial?

dumb, and i don't think this story is true at all
 

SeanMcg

macrumors 6502
Jun 1, 2004
333
1
Who redefined "smug?"

:confused: I have seen the US versions and the UK versions, and I have to wonder what people consider "smug" these days. In all the versions, Mac is pointing out his virtues in a straightforward, almost deadpan, way. There's no "I'm better than you" attitude from the character. Mac even complements PC in several spots.

I guess in this day and age you can't address well-known deficiencies without being considered smug. :( Grow up people.
 

blurtigo

macrumors member
Oct 15, 2003
32
0
United Kingdom
Thankfully I'm not sure too many people outside the mac community will have seen them, so it's difficult to see how there could be a backlash. The US versions are definitely more likeable.
2 of them ran before the premiere of Hot Fuzz on Wednesday down here - the office at home, and the virus one - so lots of people will see them.

Seemed to go down well enough in the cinema, not hysterically funny (and not the best thing Mitchell and Webb have done), but decent enough. One PC owner behind us got upset at the virus one, and the person he was with told him to shut up "because it's true" :)

So I'd say they are going down well enough, and they definitely don't come across as smug really.
 

Gosh

macrumors 6502
Aug 14, 2006
349
0
I still find it so strange that these adverts don't carry the familiar Apple logo? At first I thought it was something to do with the Apple Inc/Apple Corps dispute which was only just resolved at the time.

These are wryly amusing but - I'm not a fan of negative advertising especially when there is just so, so much to say about Macs that is truely attractive!

Mac is an unfamilair name in the UK compared to Apple so it needs to be Apple Mac. Hi I'm a PC - and I'm an Apple Mac actually"!

That lack of familiarity with the Mac reference also makes me wonder at the accuracy of the "findings" from YouGov because it's clutching at straws and making assumptions based upon the originators own emotions - I think!
 
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